• Patent Office Rejects Oracle Claim
    Oracle got bad news in its patent fight with Google: A rejection by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office of several claims on a patent that’s the subject of the lawsuit. Oracle has claimed that Google owes it more than $6 billion for parts of its Java software that were used in the Android mobile operating system. Oracle took over Java after it acquired Sun Microsystems last year. Google has argued that Oracle’s claims for damages are flawed. It has six months to appeal the finding.
  • Republic Wireless Revises Carrier Plan
    Upstart phone-service provider Republic Wireless earned praise for its plans to offer $19 a month unlimited calling. But the carrier also got criticized, notes All Things D,  for saying that those who used its unlimited cellular plan too heavily might get booted off the service. Republic’s thesis is that with so many Wi-Fi networks, most people only occasionally need cellular networks. So Reupblic believes they can do most of their calling, texting and surfing over Wi-Fi. The carrier’s initial service plan promised unlimited calling and data use, but encourages users to use Wi-Fi for most of their needs. Users ...
  • Google+ Launches 3 New TV Ads
    What do you do when your viral growth begins to wane? Like all companies -- advertise. It worked for the Google Chrome Web browser, which now owns 25% of the worldwide browser market share. So Google is giving the same strategy a shot with Google+. Google has released three new TV commercials promoting its fledging social network, featuring Hangouts with celebrities like the Muppets, as well as NBA announcers, Bill Walton, Kenny Smith, Steve Kerr, Spero Dedes and Jon Barry. Tech Crunch concludes the strategy to focus heavily on Google+ Hangouts in the new TV ads is a sound ...
  • Gannet Invests In iPhones, iPads For Newspaper
    A leaked memo from USA Today parent company Gannett Co. says the company has bought "thousands" of Apple iPhones and iPads for its newspapers.
  • Zynga Faces Competition On Facebook
    At least according to Facebook’s calculations, Zynga failed to dominate its list of most popular games, in 2011. While Zynga titles made up most of the Top 10, the top two spots went to Gardens of Time by Disney’s Playdom division, which developed a social spin to the “hidden objects” game genre, and Electronic Arts’ The Sims Social. “In general, the list looks different than the daily and monthly active user charts released by AppData, which nearly always show Zynga dominating the top four or five slots,” writes AllThingsD. Of note, Facebook said it based its own chart on games ...
  • Could Apple Lose Its Luster?
    After a record run, could Apple’s popularity have finally plateaued? Stateside, there are no signs of such leveling, but European markets are telling a different story. “Weakening economies and falling prices of rival smartphones are hurting sales of Apple iPhones across Europe,” Reuters reports, citing new data from research firm Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. “The October roll-out of Apple's iPhone 4S boosted its position in Britain and United States, but the new phones failed to excite interest in continental Europe, where Apple's share of the fast-growing smartphone market slipped.” In the 12 weeks to end-November, Apple's year-over-year market share rose from ...
  • Netflix - Bruised But Not Broken
    While overall satisfaction levels have declined, 57% of Netflix subscribers remain “very satisfied” or “extremely satisfied” with their service. So reports Citi analyst Mark Mahaney based on a recent survey of about 10,000 former and current Netflix customers. That number is down from 83% in May, while the number of “extremely satisfied” subscribers declined sharply from 50% to 18%. The number of “very satisfied” customers actually rose 6%. Overall, “Netflix is essentially holding its own,” writes TechCrunch. That’s despite some poorly executed price hikes, this year, and an ill-conceived attempt to spin off its DVD rental business. Still, it "actually ...
  • Facebook Tie-In Big Win For Yahoo News
    How’s Facebook’s Frictionless Sharing integration fairing for Yahoo News? Well, just two months into the tie-in, 1 million articles are now being shared to Facebook daily, which is leading to 500,000 daily referrals. That’s a “huge win” for Yahoo, TechCrunch concludes. Building on the success, Yahoo has just agreed to expand the integration to 26 more of its news sites, including Yahoo News Philippines and France, as well as vertical sites like OMG, Music, Movies, and Games. Yahoo also just launched a notifications system across its US sites, which will alert users when someone replies to one of their comments. Mike Kerns, Yahoo’s head ...
  • Yahoo Seeking Savior CEO
    Are there any executives brave (crazy?) enough to think they can bring Yahoo back to its former glory? “Whatever you want to call him or her -- a silver bullet, the cure or, as I like to say, the last unicorn -- Yahoo’s ever-seeking and never-deciding board has now renewed its focus on finding a new CEO,” writes AllThingsD’s Kara Swisher. The board’s mission, sources tell Swisher, is to find “some compelling and entrepreneurial CEO to get the company moving again from a product point of view, do a massive organizational overhaul and help settle Yahoo’s thorny Asian issues.” But ...
  • Amazon, Microsoft Flirt With RIM Buy
    Summoning visions of a reshaped tech universe, several reports suggest that Research In Motion had near buyout offers from Amazon, Microsoft, and Nokia. Citing sources, Reuters reports that Amazon hired an investment bank this past summer to review a potential merger with RIM, but never made a formal offer. “It is not clear whether informal discussions between Amazon and RIM ever led to specific price talk, or who else had approached RIM about a takeover,” according to Reuters. That, however, doesn’t stop the news service from coming to the conclusion that RIM “prefers to fix its problems on its own,” ...
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